More than a hundred prominent residents of the Hamptons packed the East Hampton Airport rotunda last Thursday to honor Joel Armburster, the Hamptons’ Cloud Seeding Officer who personally engineered the fabulous September weather we had this year.
Armburster’s work, financed this year for the first time by a consortium of Wall Street titans, was therefore able to mobilize seven cloud-seeding aircraft, seven days a week, sent up and out from the airport with the proper chemicals to strategically sprinkle into clouds in Connecticut, Rhode Island, western Long Island, New Jersey and out over the Atlantic in order to engineer rainfall in particular locations that would ward off storms and ensure sunny days in the Hamptons. His efforts resulted in peak midday temperatures in the low 70s for 29 of the 30 days of September, no hurricanes, and almost all rainfall at night. It was a magnificent achievement, never before accomplished by any other Cloud Seeding Officers in all the years—27—that such an office has been in effect.
“All of us here in the Hamptons,” said Mayor Tom Mix, “are grateful to you. I speak for this entire community. Such wonderful beach weather, such great pollen-free air. And just that one day when the temperature soared into the 90s. What a deft touch you have. Our hats are off to you, sir.”
The assembled crowd cheered as Armburster, stepping forward from among the 16 pilots lined up in a row who had done his bidding over the month, received his plaque. He held it over his head so everyone could see, and grinned.
“I couldn’t have done it without all my pilots, the mechanics who kept all those Piper Cubs in running order, the Oracle computer company that designed the Climate Regulation software that made all this possible, the support of this community, and especially the many billionaires who backed this venture this fall. Thank you all.”
“Except for that one lousy day on September 19th!” came a shout from Jerry Seinfeld in the audience. Everybody laughed.
“That was the exception that proved the rule,” Armburster said.
“And next year,” said the Mayor, “he’ll get it right. It will be 30 for 30.”
The awards ceremony was an exclusive event, but 4,000 other people watched from outside in the parking lot, behind the security people and velvet ropes, enjoying the proceedings on TV monitors set up high on the walls of the building.
Attending inside—invitations were much lusted after—were Jason Kidd, JLo, P. Diddy, Sting, Mercedes Ruehl, Madonna, Justin Timberlake, Justin Bieber, Alec Baldwin, Rudolph Guiliani, Bill and Hillary Clinton, Christie Brinkley, Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren, Town Supervisor Bill Wilkinson and Dr. Ruth. Also attending, but in disguise because his jurisdiction was affected by the rainfall, was Mike Bloomberg. After the ceremony, Billy Joel sang a song he had written for the occasion.